Democratic Party, New Zealand

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Founded in 1953 as the Social Credit Political League, which followed the social credit ideas of C. H. Douglas, whereby a recession was caused by a lack of purchasing power within the population. In 1966, it gained 14.4 per cent of the popular vote, though because of New Zealand's first‐past‐the‐post electoral system it only gained one seat. It split in 1972, and in 1985 acquired its current name. Its major significance in New Zealand politics derived from its function as an expression of protest against the two established parties dominating the system, the Labour and National Parties. In addition, the discrepancy between its popular share of the vote (over 20 per cent in 1981) and its parliamentary representation (two seats in 1981) sparked off a debate on the electoral system, which led to the adoption of proportional representation after a referendum in 1991. Its share of the vote declined from the mid‐1980s, and it lost its parliamentary representation in 1987. In 1991, it merged with four other groups to form the Alliance.Social Credit Party, Canada

Social Credit Party, Canada

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

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